Shopper Stops Alleged Wallet Thief | NECN
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Shopper Stops Alleged Wallet Thief

Police in Manchester, New Hampshire, have arrested a man accused of reaching into a woman’s purse and attempting to steal her wallet.

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    Police in Manchester, New Hampshire, have arrested a man accused of reaching into a woman’s purse and attempting to steal her wallet. (Published Wednesday, Dec. 24, 2014)

    A New Hampshire man was in the right place at the right time to save a woman's Christmas.

    Police in Manchester arrested a man accused of reaching into a woman's purse and attempting to steal her wallet.

    Rick White is reluctant to take much credit, saying he was honestly glad to be there to do what he could to help.

    "[I] went to check out and realized I forgot a Christmas card," Ronda Healey said.

    That Christmas card was one of the last items on her list Tuesday. She was about to leave the WalMart in Manchester, New Hampshire.

    "I got up, immediately looked in my pocketbook, and was like, 'Oh my God, he just stole my wallet,'" she said.

    Healey is not sure which happened faster - her screams for help or the shoppers who jumped in - most notably, the quick moves of a man nearby who pinned the suspect to the ground for about 10 minutes until police arrived.

    "People are going to do what they have to do, but it's still wrong to steal from somebody. Especially around the holidays," said Rick White.

    Police say they spoke to the suspect and that he lied about his identity. Police were able to identify him as 24-year-old Alan White, no relation to Rick, who is homeless.

    Alan White told police he lied about his identity in hopes of not being arrested.

    He was charged with theft and false report to law enforcement. He also had two electronic warrants for his arrest, both for driving after revocation of a license.

    Rick White, a Manchester Department of Public Works employee. is also a part-time bouncer and recently returned from a tour in Afghanistan.

    So for him, this is somewhat unremarkable.

    "It's in the actions you do, not in catching fame or anything like that," he said.

    Healey was impressed and is beyond grateful Rick White got the guy and her wallet back with everything inside.

    "He's truly a great guy and I want to thank him personally. So if you're watching this Rick, thank you so much. Merry Christmas. Hope you and your family have a wonderful holiday season. And nice to know that there's good people out there and not only did you help me, but you serve and protect us by being in the service. And I thank you from the bottom of my heart, for all that you've done. Thank you," Healey added.

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